Law, Morality and Religion

Essay by Khalil21College, Undergraduate November 2014

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TOPIC: With reference to the cases of Shaw v DPP and Knuller v DPP, show how law relates to morality and religion.

Law is a system of rules. Morality is what a person would believe to be socially accepted behaviour and socially unacceptable behaviour. Religion is the belief in a God, or high power which directs and controls one's life. It is also used to explain the origin of the human race. Morals and Laws can be derived from religion. The cases Shaw v DPP and Knuller v DPP are both cases which involved the appellants committing morally and religiously unjust acts and were taken to court for such. At that time, their actions, were simply, unacceptable. With close reference to the cases of Shaw v DPP, and Knuller v DPP, show how the law relates to morality and religion.

In the Case of Shaw v DPP 1962, the appellant had published a directory with contact information of prostitutes, nude pictures of them as well as the services they offered.

The prostitutes were charged a fee to be included and the directory was sold for a fee. This was due to the passing of the Street offenses Act in 1959. He was convicted of living on the earnings of prostitution, an offence under the Obscene Publications Act of 1959, and conspiracy to corrupt public morals. Shaw appealed, claiming that no such offence of conspiracy to corrupt public morals existed. He could not have committed a conspiracy unless what he was conspiring to commit was criminal and codified as such. Since a conspiracy is where one acts in concert to achieve an unlawful act, he could not have been convicted since no such law existed, so the appeal was granted. The House of Lords focused on the fact that the English...